BY FORTUNE MBELE
THE Premier Soccer League (PSL) says it will next week launch another bid for the resumption of the Chibuku Super Cup on July 26, despite the Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) having demanded a bio-bubble arrangement for the game to go ahead.
PSL chief executive Kennedy Ndebele told NewsDay Sport that they had been advised to reapply, but they had not received official communication regarding the bio-bubble and would not be drawn to comment on the concept.
He said they would stand guided by government declarations and health experts on the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The whole nation must focus on the pandemic. Obviously, if we are in level 4, where there is no inter-city travel, how do we play games? We were only told to reapply on July 26. We have not received communication pertaining to the bio-bubble,” Ndebele said.
The SRC last week dismissed a Zifa application for the continuation of the Chibuku Super Cup, noting the surge in COVID-19 cases.
“The SRC, hereby, gives you notice that your application for permission for the continuation of the Chibuku Super Cup has not been approved. Please stand advised that this is in light of the continued surge in COVID-19 infections which have resulted in the extension of the level 4 lockdown by another two weeks. Your NSA is requested to check with the SRC after July 26 2021 in the event of a probable review. The SRC will continue to liaise with government in that regard. Please abide by this suspension without exception,” SRC acting director-general Sebastian Garikai said.
An earlier statement by the SRC indicated a significant number of COVID-19 cases had been recorded in football since the start of the Chibuku Super Cup.
“The above statistics underscore the fact that without placing footballers and officials in a bio-secure bubble, the immediate return of premier league football in the present environment is simply not possible. A positive player risks infecting teammates, close family members and subsequently, the community,” the SRC said.
The Chibuku Super Cup has been suspended twice at a time when the PSL was looking at making another application for the start of the full league programme tentatively pencilled to start this month.
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